The first thing you should do is to notify your HR department that an unemployment claim has been fraudulently filed in your name. We will work with your HR department to notify the state that this is not a valid claim and stop the payment of benefits.
Next, you should take some steps to report this as fraud and to protect your identity. At best, your identity was only used to file for unemployment benefits. Unfortunately, in some cases, your identify may be used in other ways and you need to take actions to protect yourself and your identity from further harm.
- Contact your state agency to report that your identity has been used to claim UI benefits. You can find the specific contact information using the state contact guide found here: https://support.thomas-and-company.com/hc/en-us/articles/360059003794. Filing a claim with another person’s identity is a felony and is subject to prosecution. Therefore, the agency would like to obtain additional information for their case file. It is faster and easier to notify the state using their online services whenever possible. Due to the sheer number of fraudulent cases that are being discovered, it can be difficult to reach someone via phone.
- We encourage you to review the Federal Trade Commission website https://www.identitytheft.gov/#/unemploymentinsurance) for additional information and guidance related to identity theft. Recommended actions include, but are not limited to:
- Contact bank and credit card companies.
- Communicate with the IRS (https://www.irs.gov/identity-theft-fraud-scams/identity-theft-and-unemployment-benefits)
- There is no requirement to file a Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit. A Form 14039 should be filed only if the taxpayers' e-filed tax return is rejected because a duplicate return with their Social Security number is already on file or if the IRS instructs them to file a Form 14039.
- Taxpayers who were victims of an unemployment benefits identity theft scheme should consider opting into the IRS Identity Protection PIN program. An IP PIN is a six-digit number that helps prevent thieves from filing federal tax returns in the names of identity theft victims. The IP PIN is a voluntary program open to any taxpayer who can verify his or her identity. See details at Get an IP PIN.
- Contact all three of the credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) to place a freeze on your credit report.
Thomas & Company will also file a written response with the state to indicate that you are still working and have not filed a claim for benefits. We will continue to monitor your case and your employer’s account and protest any additional statement or charges that are charged in your case.
Identity Theft Protection programs may also be available to you through your employer. If you are not currently enrolled or a program is not offered by your employer, we have partnered with Aura Identity Guard, a leader in identity theft protection, to provide you protection for a low monthly rate. Aura is unique in that you will be assigned a dedicated Case Manager as a single point of contact to assist with:
- Contacting the state workforce agency to help resolve the UI Fraud claim.
- Determining if you have been a victim of other identity theft and help you resolve it.
- Providing ongoing protection from fraud to help achieve personal and financial goals.
For more information about Aura Identity Guard, please visit (identityguard.com/thomasco).